Maria Haro recieves the COVID-19 Moderna vaccine

Maria Haro receives the COVID-19 Moderna vaccine at a mobile clinic for CAUSE in Santa Maria in April.

The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department reported 279 new COVID-19 cases over the Sept. 11 to 12 weekend, followed by 63 new cases and one death from the illness on Monday. 

Monday's death was of a Santa Maria resident between the ages of 18 and 29, the third reported death in this age range since the beginning of the pandemic, according to county public health data

As of Monday, 563 COVID-19 cases remain active in the county, according to county data. The county recently passed a new benchmark of 40,000 total cases earlier this month. 

Of the 279 weekend cases, 138 were reported Saturday, followed by 141 on Sunday, according to county data.

Sixty-six county residents were hospitalized for COVID-19 as of Monday, including 18 individuals in the intensive care unit, county data shows.

Residents are encouraged to receive the COVID-19 vaccine to prevent against severe illness and death from the virus. Unvaccinated Santa Barbara County residents are approximately four times more quickly to contract COVID-19 than those who have received the vaccine, according to county data.

The vaccine is free and available to all residents age 12 and up, regardless of documentation status. To find a nearby vaccine appointment or walk-in clinic, visit myturn.ca.gov.

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Around 67% of all eligible county residents are now fully vaccinated against COVID-19. 

Upcoming Santa Maria vaccine clinics

The Santa Maria Joint Union High School District has announced three upcoming school-based COVID-19 vaccine clinics to increase vaccination rates among district students and families.

All three clinics will open to students at 2 p.m. and to student families at 3:30 p.m., according to district spokesman Kenny Klein.

The first clinic will be held Thursday at Righetti High School. Another will take place Sept. 23 at Santa Maria High School, followed by a Sept. 30 clinic at Pioneer Valley High School. 

Appointment registration is available via ParentSquare

Students also will be required to provide a signed consent form and bring a school ID or driver's license to receive the vaccine.

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